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Rods & American Classics on show at NEC
With an attendance conservatively estimated at 70,000 over the entire weekend, this year’s Classic Motor Show, which took place at the NEC last weekend, was undoubtedly their busiest yet. “Attendance was up by about 20 per cent on last year and the show seems to be going from strength-to-strength,” says Andy Rouse, Show Manager.
Keith Murrell's bright red '37 (or should that be orange) attracted huge interest throughout the weekend
So what was in store for the thousands who flocked to the event? Well, the format was pretty much as before, with five halls full of classics of all description, a whole village of trade stands selling everything from polish to weatherstrip, a live stage where rare and unusual cars were shown to the public, and the restoration village, a fascinating workshop where you could watch skilled craftsmen use traditional metalworking skills to create intricate aluminium panels. The only real change to the show for 2007 was the repositioning of all of the prestige and performance clubs in to Hall 4 – next to the MPH Show, which catered for the supercar enthusiasts.
Steve Fletcher's Woody - one of several stunning cars on the Meguiar's stand
Hall 4 was of particular interest to American car enthusiasts. Here you could find the NSRA stand as well as those from various American automobile clubs. These included the Mustang Owners Club GB, the Classic Corvette Owners Club, the Mopar Muscle Association and the Early Ford V8 Club. However, the biggest American car display could be found on the Classic American magazine stand, which included all of the heat winners for their “Car of the Year” competition
This 'Vette was one of the Classic American magazine heat winners
In amongst the classic cars on show were quite a few that were for sale – many of which were, to our eyes, advertised at overly inflated prices - like an F-Type Vauxhall Victor for £9,995! There were some lovely old classics up for grabs, but not many looked like a bargain.
Dave Sturgess’s coupe and Steve Fletcher’s Woody were two hot rods that graced the Meguiar’s Club Showcase exhibit, while there were more (as you might expect) on the NSRA stand, including Keith and Sharon Murrell’s ’37 coupe, Chris Hay’s Hillman Husky and Andromeda - the Fad T originally built by Nick Butler. This significant hot rod has gradually been brought back to life by its new owner and now sports a fully trimmed interior replicating that of the original car.
Overall, it was a great day out for anyone remotely interested in classics. Sure, new cars have moved on in terms of refinement, but they are still powered by the internal combustion engine and to our eyes, very few have the style, grace and presence of the iconic cars of yesteryear.
Story & photos: Andy Kirk
Andromeda has been gradually brought back to life - a lovely job too
The high quality of this early Chevy truck was matched, if not bettered by its cargo - a restored old Harley
Dave Sturgess's coupe also earned a place on the Meguiar's stand
This black bug was the star of the Autoglym stand
'34 Phaeton on the Early Ford stand
There were plenty of Cobra replicas on show, including the aluminium-bodied versions from Hawk
This awesome Daimler SP250 was a star of the show last year too
The DeLorean stand was impressive considering how few members must exist
A show bargain? This Frogeye sold for under £5000
How about a GT40 Spyder replica?
One of the many cars produced by GT Developments in Poole
With its unique body, this Model A had a certain rat rod appeal
Would you believe the photos above and below are of a Volvo? There's an awful lot of Chrysler Airflow influence in this, though we're not sure which came first
This F-Type Vauxhall Victor was in great condition, but the price was £9,995
Clearly the owner of this 'Vette prefers the shape of an earlier model with the horsepower of a modern motor. It looks like a great marriage/result too
This early Chevy truck was a feature on the North East American Car Club stand
If you want something a little more compact and economical than a '70s 'Vette but with similar looks, then this pretty Opel GT might be just the ticket
This razor-edge Karmann Ghia has been on the scene for a while now, but it never fails to impress